by Arielle Guttman

May 7, 2011

Sunday evening, two days after the Royal Wedding, I found myself guiltily soaking up the intricacies of the French lace on the wedding dress when I was interrupted by a cell phone call. The caller quite animatedly reported that Osama was dead. Our connection wasn’t that great, so my husband said, “Obama is dead?” I shook myself to an upright position with a look of horror on my face. “Not Obama – Osama!” she carefully enunciated. “Osama bin Laden!” Still upright I switched the channel to find every other channel than the one I had been watching, completely abuzz with the drama that had just unfolded. Details were not yet fully available, but news anchors were firmly committed to repeating “Osama bin Laden is dead. The United States special operations has been successful in killing him. The body has been confirmed.”

Well, we now know the rest of the story, as the news media has been reminding us in the days of the aftermath. So the ground zero site at 911 was swarming with celebrants in those days, and for many other areas of the country, victory parties were abounding.

Then came the video playbacks, the photos, the sights and sounds and feelings of terror that enveloped the country and the world in the aftermath of 911, complete with smoke and blood and terror. Also came the faces and words of GW Bush, Dick Cheney, Donald Rumsfeld – the three musketeers of the post-millennium, sworn to keeping terror their top priority as long as they all shall live. The new Republican leaders, all weighing in on the event, echoed the old guard by emphatic reminders that never can we forget those doomsday events of September 11 and never can we assume for one moment that we are any safer now with bin Laden dead, than we were with him alive. “No doubt his followers will want to retaliate – and enact some very nasty revenge on the U.S. for the killing of their beloved leader.” Yes, they repeated this like a mantra for days. We must be even more vigilant now.

And so it goes…the cycle of blood, war, killing, destruction and fear keeps circling around in an unending feedback loop. Where will it all end?

Media: we had only a brief moment of the love story taking top ranking on all the networks. Then the wedding occurred and there was the gorgeous bride. And the dress. Then the bridal attendants. Then the ring. Then the kiss. The magical kiss. First, the disappointingly brief kiss. But then a real kiss. Yes, the world was feeling good because love was in the air.

So what if you don’t believe in the monarchy and so what if you don’t care about this particular bride and groom? The world needed that love story –  a love story that works – and this one has all the right ingredients to make it a winner. But regardless of gazing into the crystal ball to determine what their fate will be in the future, it was a video the world was in need of, and a theme that the media practically ignores: Love is what the world needs! And, in a blink of an eye it was already eclipsed by a new story.

Now, back to the lace, please.